Dozens of American sailors who assisted Japan during the 2011 nuclear disaster are suing the operators of Fukushima power plant for more than £612 million (US$1bn) in damages, claiming that they have become sick from radiation exposure.
The sailors were on board the USS Ronald Reagan super-carrier when it was diverted to northeast Japan following the devastation of the March 11, 2011 earthquake which triggered a tsunami and subsequent nuclear disaster.
As they helped rescue victims and evacuate disaster zones, the claimants allege that they drank, bathed and waded through water contaminated with radiation from the damaged nuclear power plant and were reportedly exposed to radioactive plumes.
A total of 79 named claimants – including sailors, support personnel and dependents – allege that over the past three years, they have suffered from serious health issues as a result of radiation exposure from the plant, ranging from an array of cancers such as leukemia to eye diseases and fertility problems.
I’m afraid that I just don’t believe it for a number of reasons.
USS Ronald Reagan is a nuclear powered ship itself. Thus it is festooned with nuclear monitoring equipment. Which, amazingly, didn’t go off.
Secondly, if radiation were the cause of these illnesses this would be quite easy to test. Check the bodies of the people suffering from them for radiation. That they’re not waving this around as a bloody shirt leads one to suspect that they can’t find any such evidence.
“There is no indication that any U.S. Personnel supporting Operation Tomodachi experienced radiation exposure at levels associated with the occurrence of long-term health effects,” a US Navy spokesman told The Telegraph.
“All personnel were monitored, with very sensitive instruments. The worst case radiation exposure was less than 25 per cent of the annual radiation exposure that a member of the public gets from the sun, rocks or soil.”
I’m sorry, but I just don’t believe the claims being made in this case.